Momotaro/Peach Boy Riverside Story Recap
The story of Momotaro is one known all over Japan. The story tells of an old man who worked while his wife washed clothes down by the river. One day, a peach came floating down the river and the old woman picked it up. The peach was in fact a person they named Momotaro. As Momotaro grew older, he eventually left home and defeated a very powerful demon.
Peach Boy Riverside explores this idea of Momotaro (Peach Boy) with its plot focused around the idea that multiple peaches came floating down that river one day and the Momotaro of legend was but one of many powerful creatures. Sally uses her Peach Eye to slay any Oni who impede her progress.
Originally, Sally was a princess. However, she grew tired of living such an enclosed life and wanted to see the world. After a group of ogres attacked her family, she was saved by a mysterious demon slayer known as Kibutsu Mikoto. Sally now strives to track down her savior.
Peach Boy Riverside and Plot Subversion
By its name alone, Peach Boy Riverside is all about subverting expectations. The original story of Momotaro has been told countless times over and this show sees to throw a spanner into the famous tale by retelling it with a fantasy twist.
Additionally, Peach Boy Riverside loves to lull the audience into a false sense of security. Most episodes will run like a typical comedy fantasy. Characters will interact with one another, jokes will be told, but suddenly the entire atmosphere will shift as an explosion wipes out every man, woman, and child in the immediate vicinity.
For a show that seems to ground its premise, theming, and narrative on tricking audiences, Peach Boy Riverside does a great job in eliciting a few jump scares or moments of pure surprise!
Peach Boy Riverside and Character Subversion
Let's take a look at how Peach Boy Riverside tackles characters next. Firstly, we have the series lead, Sally. Sally appears to be a typical starry-eyed adventurer. However, we soon come to learn that, when she activates her powers, she transforms into a sadistic demon-killing machine!
Additionally, her partner Frau appears to be a cute and kind bunny-human hybrid, but is, in fact, a ruthless demon slayer as well. However, this subversion is then subverted even further, as we learn that the people of this world fear demihumans like Frau. The people of this world already know the power that demihumans can possess and shun them, and all who associate with them, from entering into their towns. However, it turns out that Frau IS the kind and loveable bunny we thought she was at first glance. She saves Sally on multiple occasions and even saves an entire town full of people!
This subversion continues to the villains as well. Meki (turned Carrot) was an ogre who, after being stripped of her powers, decided to follow along with Sally. Normally in fantasy anime, enemies like ogres are designed to be stereotypically evil, to allow for them to be mowed down in droves. Yet, we're presented with a plot that could lead to all-out war should Sally follow the advice of Mikoto, but could also lead to possible retribution should she follow the advice of Sumeragi. Jucerino is another interesting villain added into the mix. She (along with Todoroki) appears to be nothing more than a simple child at first glance. She pesters those around her for "upsies" (to be carried on their shoulders) and she cheers Hawthorne on enthusiastically during his fight. However, unlike typical children, both these characters appear to possess otherworldly strength in the demon world and can thereby sneak into crowds undetected before unleading their destructive power!
The original tale of Momotaro was pretty cut and dry. The good Momotaro bests the bad Oni. However, Peach Boy Riverside seems interested in expanding this tale with more of a blurred spectrum as the inspiration. Good and evil are but words and Peach Boy Riverside does a great job of exploring this. What do you think of Peach Boy Riverside? Let us know down below!